Cat’s Heart

My daughter’s cat lies on the gray-painted floor at the top of the stairs, just outside her room, looking in. She’s away with friends in Maine. Over email, her sister and I see pictures of her swimming in a lake and the ocean — all that great blue and green wilderness around her 13-year-old self.

Her cat, of course, knows nothing of this, but simply lies at the threshold to her door, waiting for her return.

This morning, the rain’s returned, a great downpour. In the garden, yesterday, I pulled out handfuls of dead lily leaves, the broken and blackened remainders of lupine stems. Middle of August, and school and soccer start soon. The evenings come earlier, and the Black-eyed Susans burst brightly along the weedy roadsides.

Things do not change; we change.

— Thoreau

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By Brett Ann Stanciu

Brett Ann Stanciu lives with her two daughters in Hardwick, Vermont. Her creative nonfiction book, Unstitched: My Journey to Understand Opioid Addiction and How People and Communities Can Heal, will be published by Steerforth Press in September 2021. Her novel about rural life in Vermont, Hidden View, was published in 2015.

2 comments

  1. One of the make things that make me happiest in this life are cats who wait loyally for their little girls. I had one, and my daughter has one. I’m so glad your daughter has one, too!

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